Tuesday, January 20, 2009

New Sweater For Stitches West

I just finished a sweater I've been working on since last April. Normally it doesn't take me that long to finish a sweater, but 2008 seemed to be a year of knitting deadlines for me! The sweater started out great, but then took back seat to:
  • 5-1/2 pairs of socks for Sock Wars III
  • 4 design submissions for Think Outside the Sox
  • 4 slices of knitted toast and dishcloths for the Olympic Yarn Smackdown
  • 1 toy piggie for the Ravelympics
  • 2 baby gifts - one sweater and one blanket
  • 1 well-dressed charity bear
  • 1 Christmas sock monkey
  • 3 Christmas hats
  • 1 Christmas felted bag
  • 2 other pair of socks that really didn't have a deadline - I just wanted to knit them :-)

So yay! the sweater is finally done, and it fits great. I need to have The Boytoy take a photo, so I can post it here.

As I am so prone to do, I dreamed up the next sweater while finishing the last one. In my stash, I have 14 skeins of Knit Picks Andean Silk in the Hollyberry color. It is gloriously soft as 55% Superfine Alpaca, 23% Silk, and 22% Merino Wool, and the color is so rich and edible, it keeps making me crave cranberry sauce (and of course, the rest of the Thanksgiving meal.) I also picked up some cranberry colored glass beads when I visited Bellingham last year, which I'll incorporate into the design.

My goal for this sweater is to complete it by Stitches West, which begins on 2/26/09. The first day of this conference also happens to be my birthday, so I plan to decadently spend the four days immersed in fiber, creative consciousness, and margaritas. This is an agressive goal, but I'll admit up front that I plan to use my Bond machine to expedite the stockinette stitch areas of the sweater. The bands and wide lace lower border will all be done by hand. I have no guilt with regard to this strategy. After 40 years of knitting, I think I have earned the right to no longer have to prove I can do stockinette stitch in my sleep.

I'm no artist, but here is my "vision". I haven't named it yet (am open to suggestions). I'm sure it will get a nickname or two along the way.


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